Radio SMCQ: John Adams

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Worcester, Massachusetts, USA, 1947

  • Composer

John Adams is one of America’s most admired and respected composers. Born and raised in New England and educated at Harvard, Adams moved in 1971 to California, where he taught for ten years at the San Francisco Conservatory and later became composer in residence at the San Francisco Symphony.

Adams’s operatic works, including Nixon in China, The Death of Klinghof-fer and Doctor Atomic, all created in collaboration with stage director Peter Sellars, are among the most successful of our time. On the Transmigration of Souls, written for the New York Philharmonic in commemoration of the first anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks, received the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Music, and won a rare “triple crown” at the Grammys, including “Best Orchestral Performance.”

The composer is currently writing a book of memoirs and commentary on American musical life. Due for publication in 2007, it will be released by Farrar Straus & Giroux in the US and by Faber Ltd. in the UK. He still maintains an active life as a conductor, appearing with the world’s greatest orchestras. He is currently Composer in Residence at Carnegie Hall and Artist in Association with the BBC Symphony. Reprinted with kind permission of www.earbox.com

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